Iraq elections: will the winners bring about change?

Print Friendly

By Fatih Abdulsalam

Azzaman, May 20, 2014

The electoral commission has announced the results of last month’s general elections with Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki’s alliance emerging as the winner with 92 of the 328 seats in the Council of Representatives (parliament).

Maliki falls short of a majority. His only way for a third term is through a coalition government that will include other political factions.

True, his Shiite rivals, Ammar al-Hakim’s Muwatin and the Ahrar movement of Moqtada al-Sadr won a combined 57 seats and together they may form a majority, but it is not clear whether they will jump on Maliki’s boat.

But lets us put political wrangling over the formation of a new government aside, and concentrate on the wishes of the Iraqi people.

Millions of ordinary Iraqis are waiting anxiously for a new period of security and prosperity to enable them enjoy life with dignity.

One the other hand, there is a minority of Iraqis immersed in political struggle with all its dirty work and chaotic and corruptive business. Despite this minority’s commotion, there are only a few in Iraq who believe in the sincerity of their voices and honesty of their tactics.

The majority of Iraqis yearn for change. They thought that casting a ballot in a democratic system means better public amenities and services and this is why they went to polls in droves braving bombs and suicide bombers.

As for the political minority of Iraqi politicians and those oscillating in their orbit, it seems they all now seem to agree, though belatedly, that the political process is skewed and if not redressed and changed for the better it can never lead to change for the better.

The conclusion of the results of the elections ca be summarized as follows:

There is no tangible change in the faces of the people who will be ruling the country for the next four years. So the ball is in their court.

They are the ones who will command the sinking Iraqi ship as it struggles amid high waves.

They have two tasks: The first is to save the ship from sinking and embark on political reform on the platform of which they launched their election campaigns.

Second, they are under obligation to meet the dreams of millions of Iraqis of a life with dignity that is tantamount to the riches of their oil- rich country.